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Selling War in a Media AgeThe Presidency and Public Opinion in the American Century$
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Kenneth Osgood

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780813034669

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813034669.001.0001

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Imperial Tutor

Imperial Tutor

William McKinley, the War of 1898, and the New Empire, 1898–1902

(p.18) 1 Imperial Tutor
Selling War in a Media Age
Andrew L. Johns, Kenneth Osgood
University Press of Florida

This chapter addresses President William McKinley's selling of the War of 1898, the overseas empire that resulted from that war, and the so-called Philippine Insurrection that followed. It focuses squarely on the White House and the importance McKinley and his advisors attached to public opinion and the ways they evaluated and sought to manipulate it. The president quickly grasped the growing importance of public opinion and developed new means to influence it in his favor. The chapter concludes that McKinley's actions created not only new standards in presidential rhetoric that would prove instructive to his successors in the Oval Office, but also set precedents that foreshadowed the problems and risks inherent in manipulating public opinion.

Keywords:   William McKinley, War of 1898, Philippine Insurrection, public opinion, presidential rhetoric, Oval Office

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